The Rose Deal, Kent: pub and foodie guesthouse review
What is The Rose’s USP?
The genteel coastal town of Deal, on the Kent coast, has gone hip in recent years, attracting artists and second-homers from Hackney and Dalston, who can bomb down to “Dealston” in just over an hour thanks to a fast new train service from St Pancras
Now, those design-conscious weekenders have a chic new pub with rooms to base themselves in: The Rose, a Victorian inn on the town’s high street, had fallen into serious decline but has just been given a colourful makeover by ex-Wallpaper journalist Alex Bagner and her property developer husband, Christopher Hicks.
Hicks grew up in the area and his great-grandfather owned the local brewery, and so the couple have strong links to the town, as well as their own holiday cottage nearby. They’d had their eye on the rundown pub for a while so, when the owner finally decided to sell, they snapped it up and spent a year refurbishing it, opening the doors in May 2018.
Now it’s a colourful, chic guest house on the High Street and moments away from the quirky shops and antique stores, and the wide, lovely Deal beach.
What to eat?
The Dealston vibe continues in the kitchen, which is headed up by chef Rachel O’Sullivan (previously of Polpo and Spuntino but most recently running the cult Towpath Cafe in East London). Rachel is originally from Australia and, although the menu is big on British comfort food, there’s a fresh Aussie feel to many of the dishes, like chicken schnitzel jazzed up with fennel slaw, and a creative veggie option of violet artichokes, white beans and dandelion and goats curd.
The Rose is a perfect weekend escape from London; quick to escape to, affordable and quirky.
Read my full review for Olive magazine here.